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Re: indent-tabs-mode default [was: Representation of the Emacs userbase

From: Dmitry Gutov
Subject: Re: indent-tabs-mode default [was: Representation of the Emacs userbase on emacs-devel]
Date: Mon, 6 Sep 2021 15:23:31 +0300
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/78.13.0

On 06.09.2021 06:06, Richard Stallman wrote:
   > And having a theme to just make indent-tabs-mode behavior sane, that
   > would just be ridiculous.

I've been using indent-tabs-mode = nil for enough time to conclude
I personally would not object to making that the default.

Would someone like to look up who objected to it before, and
ask them to try setting it to nil for a month and see what cases
actually cause them trouble?

I'm afraid it's not a good question.

If you look at bug#20322 or the latest discussion, people usually talk about inconveniencing *others* (all users that are not present in the discussion). Because every one who objected can personally easily customize indent-tabs-mode to t locally, and that will endure for a long time, without being affected by any changes in the default value in any future Emacs version.

But as far as customizing it to nil goes, that's not generally a good suggestion because people who use tabs for indentation often do that due to coding style required at their current place of employment (and they often do not get a say in that).

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